Top 10 new features in AutoCAD 2016

When AutoCAD 2016 was announced this week, we bypassed our normal “What’s new” post and linked you to over a dozen other similar reviews. Now that the dust has somewhat settled, let’s review the top 10 new features in AutoCAD 2016. Do you agree with this list? Leave a comment.

  • Geometric Center Object Snap – This was a top wish on the AUGI wishlist. This allows you to snap to the center of polygons and other closed polylines. Type in GCE at the command line when needed or access it like you would any other object snap.

Geometric Center Object Snap

  • Revision Cloud Enhancements – Another AUGI wishlist item, the new revision cloud now contains polyline-like grips on corners to help with edits. Previously there were grips for each and every arc of the revision cloud. The number and placement of the fewer grips will vary depending on how the revision cloud was created. If you explode or break a new revision cloud, it reverts to the old behavior.

Revision Cloud

  • Dimensioning – Several new dimensioning enhancements including a default layer for all dimensions, dimensioning options visible from the DIM command, and a much shorter workflow when using the DIM command because the appropriate type of dimension will be created based on your per-selection of the entity. After you start the DIM command and move the cursor around, various options for the finished dimension are previewed waiting for your choice. Text wrapping for text in dimensions is now supported also.
  • Text Frame – One more AUGI wishlist item granted is the ability to add a text frame, or border to any Mtext object.

Mtext with Border

  • Status Bar Enhancements – The status bar can now wrap onto two rows when you have more icons than will fit on one row. Many users wished to restore the TEXT option to the status bar icons, but unfortunately this was not granted.
  • Xref Enhancements – When the new AutoCAD 2016 system variable XREFOVERRIDE is set to 1, all xref objects behave as if their entity color was set to Bylayer. Xref layers are now omitted from the Properties palette, and are shown in gray text in the Ribbon drop down.
  • PDF Enhancements – Zooming and panning with an attached PDF is much faster now in AutoCAD 2016. More forms of AutoCAD text including SHX fonts and Unicode characters are now searchable in PDF files output from AutoCAD.
  • Point Cloud Enhancements – Dynamic UCS now works with point clouds when segmentation data is indicated in the properties palette. Point Cloud object snaps are now listed in the 3D Object Snap dialog box. Named Point Cloud cropping states are now supported.
  • Navisworks Support – AutoCAD 2016 now supports attaching Navisworks files in either NWD or NWC format.
  • System Variable Monitor – Using the new System Variable monitor, you can define the state of certain system variables and if they are changed, you will be notified. You can also easily restore the entire list of variable to their default state.